An Australian comedian has received a visit from police for insulting a senior politician on Twitter.
Officers from the criminal investigation unit called at the Melbourne home of Catherine Deveny after she posted a message jokingly offering to kill Queensland state premier Campbell Newman.
Newman has been criticised for slashing public services while spending $80 million on the racing industry, including funding a new greyhound racing track.
Last month, Deveny posted: ‘Campbell Newman is sinking bucks to “rejuvenate the racing industry” and gutting the arts. He’s a cultural vandal and an utter cunt.’
And after one of her Twitter followers posted: ‘Campbell Newman, I will destroy your hideous soul with the intensity of my pure fucking hatred’, Deveny joked: ‘You want I kill him?’
Now she has revealed that she had a knock on the door from her local police, who she says had been ‘directed by the top brass of the Queensland Police to give me a “talking to”’ over those comment.
She said the incident was laughable, ‘particularly considering the hate mail, death and sexually violent threats I and many I expect, high profile women cop on a regular basis’.
Newman's office has denied the Premier made any complaint over the tweets, saying: ‘Police make their own decisions.’ And police say they acted after a tipoff to an anonymous Crimestoppers number, so cannot reveal who complained.
Deveny said the police who visited her home were also laughing off the complaints, too.
The case has echoes of the British Twitter joke trial, in which Paul Chambers was successfully prosecuted for saying he would blow Robin Hood airport ‘sky high’ in frustration over delays. His conviction was later overturned on appeal.